Lin-Manuel Miranda has agreed criticism of “Hamilton” is “valid” – but doesn’t believe that means it should be “cancelled”.
The 40-year-old star’s musical about America’s founding father Alexander Hamilton was subject to a #CancelHamilton social media campaign over the winter because it failed to reference the impact of slavery on the people who suffered it but the show creator insisted he was never out to “make idols” out of the featured figures of US history.
He said: “I think if I were in love with statues, we wouldn’t have made Hamilton the way we made it.
“We were obviously never trying to make idols of these people. The goal was to make them as human and as flawed as possible… If there’s any thesis in the show, it’s that these guys were making it up as they went along… and their foibles and their contradictions make it into the contradictions of our founding.
“In terms of criticism, it’s all valid. I don’t believe criticism equals cancellation.
“I know what didn’t make it into the show, I’m the one who spent six years writing it.
“That’s part of what comes with taking real life and trying to smoosh it into two and a half hours of musical theatre, there’s always going to be stuff that doesn’t make it in… Everything that’s not in the show is fair game to point out.”
And the “Mary Poppins Returns” star understands why his “proto-immigrant story” has been attacked because opinions change all the time.
He added to The Guardian newspaper: “The world’s always changing. That’s one of the things Hamilton’s about, right?
“Hamilton was thought of as great for a while, and then he’s outlived by people who hate him. And he’s erased and the opinion changes.
“Reputations rise and fall. That’s one of the things the show’s about, so I don’t see why [it] would escape that. It happens to all of us.”
Lin-Manuel admitted the success of the production means he “doesn’t have to take a gig to pay the rent”, but he still wants to be creatively fulfilled.
He said: “But then the question becomes: what do you want to spend your time doing?
“And the answer is that I’m trying to say yes to the stuff I still want to write and that is self-generated.
“I have my stories that I carry around like luggage, and I want to put those into the world. Hamilton was certainly not the last one of those.”